by German Lopez
Ohio has a lot of natural gas resources accessible by fracking, but are they worth $1 trillion? Gov. John Kasich seems to think so.
Unfortunately for Kasich, prominent geologists have no idea how he
got that number, and one geologist estimated Kasich is off by a “couple
of zeroes.” The U.S. unemployment rate rose to 8.3 percent as the economy added 163,000 jobs in July. Economists have been calling for the Federal Reserve to help turn the economy around, but the Federal Reserve decided it will not take action in its latest meeting.Cincinnati City Council is using words to try to push Cincinnati Bell to not outsource jobs. But Cincinnati Bell seems more interested in profits, not words.An Ohio Inspector General report found Ohio Superintendent of Public Instruction Stan Heffner misused state resources and was in conflict of interest when testifying to the Ohio legislature. Some Ohio Democrats are now calling for the superintendent to resign and face criminal charges. The news continues a rocky past few weeks the Ohio Department of Education, which is now being investigated by the state auditor after reports of fraudulent data reporting.The Ohio Libertarian Party is asking Democrats what took them so long to support same-sex marriage rights. My guess is politics.In related news, same-sex couples will be making out at Chick-fil-A today. Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee OKed the movement in the most passive aggressive way possible.Prison companies are making big profits from illegal immigrants. Some opponents of private prisons say the system creates an enormous conflict of interest, but Republicans disagree. Prison companies are big campaign contributors for Republicans.President Barack Obama will be speaking about taxes today. The president opposes the Republican plan to keep tax rates lower for the wealthy. Republicans say the president’s plan would raise taxes on small businesses, but the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities says that claim doesn’t check out with reality. The president will be broadcasting his comments at 11:45 a.m. here.Some McDonald’s chains have started serving breakfast after midnight. The intoxicated will probably approve.The Curiosity rover will be hitting Mars Monday. The rover is NASA's most ambitious endeavor in Mars yet.In a discovery that changes everything, scientists have found it’s better for sperm to be slow than it is for them to be fast.
by German Lopez
Posted In: News
at 12:35 PM | Permalink
Kasich waiting to decide on expansion in Ohio despite federal funding
A new study by Harvard researchers has found that a 2001 and 2002
expansion of Medicaid coverage in Arizona, New York and Maine might have
saved lives. The study also concluded that the Medicaid expansion in
the three states improved coverage, access to care and self-reported
The study found that mortality rates in the three states were
collectively 6.1 percent lower than states that did not expand Medicaid.
The decreased mortality rate mostly benefited older adults, nonwhites
and residents of poor counties.
Since they could only look at Arizona, New York and Maine, researchers
cautioned that the results might not be reflective of how a Medicaid
expansion would work in every state. However, previous research has
shown similar results. Earlier this year, results for the ongoing Oregon
were released with more positive implications for people on Medicaid —
happier people, better self-reported health and stronger financial
Despite the evidence, Gov. John Kasich has recently said he will wait on
his decision to expand Medicaid. As part of the Affordable Care Act —
also known as “Obamacare” — states are being asked to expand their
Medicaid coverage to a new federal standard of 133 percent of the
poverty line. The federal government would completely fund the expansion
between 2014 and 2016. Afterward, states would have to pick up 10
percent of the cost, and the federal government will pay the rest.
Kasich and Lt. Gov. Mary Taylor have said the expansion, which state
officials estimate would add 400,000 Ohioans to Medicaid enrollment, is
too expensive for the state. On June 28, Taylor told
The Cleveland Plain Dealer,
“Quite frankly we're not sure where we're going to get the money from
to cover the additional obligation of spending, let alone have the
discussion about the expansion of Medicaid.”
But some research has suggested that the Medicaid expansion would
actually save states money by mitigating the cost of having so many
uninsured people. The Arkansas Department of Human Services claims the
state would save $378 million by 2025 with the Medicaid expansion. Most
of the savings would come from uncompensated care — costs that are
placed on health institutions and state and local governments when
uninsured patients that can’t and don’t pay use medical services. The
Urban Institute released a study in 2011 with similar results.
Ohio is not the only state to show skepticism toward the Medicaid
expansion. After the Supreme Court released its decision upholding
Obamacare, state officials in Texas and Florida said they will not take
part in the Medicaid expansion. State governments have until Nov. 10 to
make a final decision on whether or not they will take part in the
by German Lopez
During a midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises
in Aurora, Colorado last night, a gunman walked into a theater, threw
tear gas, and opened fire. Police identified James Holmes as
the suspect in the shooting. Twelve were killed and at least 50 were
wounded. On Twitter, one witness lamented that “there is no dark knight,
no hero, that could save us from anything like this.”Cincinnati Police Chief James Craig will learn later this summer if he'll be required to undergo additional training and take the state police exam. Craig and his attorneys yesterday told the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission about his 36 years of policing experience.
This summer, Ohio families will receive health
insurance rebates as part of President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care
Act. The average family will receive $139. In total, Ohioans will be getting back $11.3 million.
Ohio’s unemployment rate dropped to 7.2 percent in June,
down from 7.3 percent in May. That’s the lowest unemployment has been
An Ohio Supreme Court task force approved changes that will help prevent racial bias in death penalty cases.
Gov. John Kasich can’t get even his own people to agree
with him on his tax plan. An Ohio Tea Party group came out against the
Speaker of the House John Boehner
called the issue of Mitt Romney’s tax returns a “sideshow” and said that
Americans don’t care about it. But Romney apparently disagreed with Boehner’s
perspective in 1994 when he asked then-Senator Ted Kennedy to release
his tax returns.
First giant mirrors, then volcanoes. Now, scientists want to use plankton to help fight global warming.
0 Comments · Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Gov. John Kasich on June 27 signed into law Ohio’s Safe Harbor Act, what is being touted as one of the country’s toughest human trafficking bills. The law’s passage comes shortly after Kasich re
Local colleges increase tuition, cut offerings in response to decreasing state funding
2 Comments · Wednesday, June 27, 2012
A U.S. Department of Education survey has
found that Ohio’s public colleges are among the most expensive for
students nationwide, and universities around the region were quick to blame the Ohio state government for high costs.
by Danny Cross
The Enquirer today broke out its
Freedom of the Press Card, pressing the city to release details of
the bids to build the streetcar's five vehicles. Enquirer
Editor and Vice President Carolyn Washburn says the newspaper is
being a good watchdog by investigating all the redacted parts of
documents released by the city, which reportedly include typical
streetcar parts, performance data and personal information of
employees. A firm called CAF USA, which won the bid for more than $20
million, is trying to block the release of the data, along with two
losing bidders who claim the information is trade secret.
Ohio Gov. John Kasich and Kentucky Gov.
Steve Beshear are considering a private-public partnership that
includes tolls to fund renovations to the Brent Spence Bridge.
President Obama enjoyed an enthusiastic
welcome from Los Angeles LGBT supporters at an event in Beverly Hills.
Republicans are saying Obama is being all glitzy in California so
he's out of touch with Americans' struggles.
Russia would like Iran to be involved
in forcing a political transition in Syria. U.S. Secretary of State
Hillary Clinton says Syrian President Bashar Assad should quit and
The U.S. is losing patience with
George Zimmerman's bond hearing has
been set for June 29. He returned to jail on Sunday after a judge
revoked his bond for failing to disclose $135,000 in funds raised for
his legal defense.
Thousands of homes in the Atlantic and
Gulf coasts are at high risk for hurricane damage, and New York City
has the highest risk of losses.
Do you use LinkedIn or eHarmony? Well,
you shouldn't. Also, both sites were hacked and had user
A car called the Honda Fit EV has
earned the highest ever miles-per-gallon equivalency rating from the U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency — 118 mpg.
More than 80 lawsuits by former NFL
players have been consolidated and filed in a Philadelphia federal
court, accusing the league of hiding details that linked head trauma
to permanent brain injuries. The NFL denies culpability.
The Reds are still in first place.
by Danny Cross
The Enquirer today offered a
dramatic headline on its front page story, asking the figurative
question, “Who will blink first on Music Hall deal?” Although
Mayor Mark Mallory is able to literally blink, such involuntary
action will not directly affect his stance on giving away Music Hall,
which he is still opposed to.
Cincinnati's outstanding stadium tax
bonds were downgraded by Moody's Investor Services, partially as a
result of the county's sale of Drake Hospital last year and its
unwillingness to cut the property tax rollback that helped convince
rich people to vote for the tax in the first place. Gov. John Kasich this week signed an
executive order allowing the Ohio Lottery Commission to expedite new
rules allowing slot machines at racetracks. The state's seven
racetracks are expected to begin submitting applications for the
17,500 machines within the next few months.
Condoleeze Rice endorsed Mitt Romney,
as the Republican presidential candidate struggles to differentiate
his foreign policy from Obama's.
A Seattle man yesterday killed five
people before shooting himself as authorities closed in on him.
Various security cameras caught footage of the suspect entering a
cafe, where he allegedly shot and killed four people. He reportedly killed
another person during a carjacking. According to The Seattle Times,
the suspect is Ian Lee Stawicki, 40, of Seattle, whose brother says
he is mentally ill.
Florida Democrats are wondering what's
up with Republican Gov. Rick Scott's effort to purge illegal voters
from the state's rolls before this year's elections, partially in
response to legal voters being booted.
Job creation: light. Unemployment
claims: slightly up. Economy: growing a little slower than expected. Details here
Ever ordered a medium soda only to
realize that the giant cup doesn't fit in a normal car cup holder?
New York City could soon ban large sodas and other sugary drinks.
0 Comments · Wednesday, May 30, 2012
The well-funded organization We Are Ohio
announced on May 21 that it will be taking up redistricting laws as its
next major initiative by joining forces with Ohio Voters First, an
organization that was created in response to a Republican redistricting
plan that created 12 solidly Republican districts and four largely
by Danny Cross
Ohio Treasurer Josh Mandel has returned
more than $100,000 in campaign contributions in response to an FBI
investigation into 21 donors who had no record of giving to federal
campaigns and many appearing to have low incomes. Mandel, a
Republican, is running against incombent Democrat Sen. Sherrod Brown.
Mandel's campaign treasurer Kathryn Kessler sent a letter to donors
explaining that any contributions appearing to be under investigation
would be refunded.
From The Toledo Blade:
Although the campaign provided a copy of the letter to The
Blade, it would not explain the timing of the decision or how long it
has been aware of the federal probe.
The Blade revealed the unusual pattern of contributions in
The company's owner, Benjamin Suarez, and 16 of his employees
(plus some of their spouses) gave about $200,000 to Mr. Mandel and
U.S. Rep. Jim Renacci (R., Wadsworth) last year. Each of those donors
gave $5,000, the maximum allowable amount, to one or both candidates.
The Ohio Senate yesterday passed new
fracking regulations, and the final version caused some environmental
organizations to change their stance on the bill. The Ohio
Environmental Council and the Sierra Club had both been neutral on
the legislation until changes were made forcing anyone suing over
chemical trade secrets to show current or potential harm, according
to The Enquirer. The regulations are part of Kasich's new energy bill
and easily passed both the Senate and House and is expected to be
signed by Kasich soon.
Cincinnati Public Schools says it will
apply for the latest available federal education grants, which amount
to nearly $700 million. The grants are geared toward helping schools
proceed with reform and innovation.
According to a new poll, President
Obama leads Mitt Romney in Ohio by six percentage points. Wonder if
Obama's “cow pie of distortion” speech had anything to do with
The John Edwards trial has entered day
six of deliberations.
United Nations inspectors have
reportedly found uranium in Iran enriched beyond the highest levels
previously reported. One diplomat said the measure could actually be
a measurement error, though the reading could also mean that Iran is
closer to producing bomb-grade uranium than previously thought.
Scientists might be one step closer to
creating birth control for men after U.K. scientists found a gene
used to enable sperm to mature.
From USA Today: “Profits at big U.S.
companies broke records last year, and so did pay for CEOs.”
Facebook's initial public offering
didn't go entirely as expected, and some investors are getting
refunds after technical problems and other issues marred the
company's first week of trading.
The Reds completed a four-game sweep of
the Atlanta Braves last night, winning their sixth in a row and
overtaking the St. Louis Cardinal for first place in the NL Central.